Best of the Bay 2011: BEST PLACE TO MEET YOUR MAKER

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If you ever need reminding that nerd is still the new black, TechShop is at the ready. Inside this SoMa "open access public workshop" you'll find a veritable wonderland of high-tech tools for metal- and wood-working, machining, fabric crafts, electronics, and robotics — with classes on how to use it all. Offerings range from entry-level courses on basic skills like soldering, laser-cutting, silk-screening, milling, and injection-molding, to pro-pushing seminars on the latest precision machining tools and high-tech design software. Individual memberships are a pricey, $100–$125 per month (less for students), but hey — at least you won't have to buy your own 3-D scanner! Whether you have a skill you're itching to hone, an invention you'd like to prototype, or a project you're hoping to finalize, this shop's capable crew will help you see it through.

926 Howard, SF. (415) 263-9161, www.techshop.ws/tssf